Monday, 28 May 2012

Friday, 25 May 2012


and this is what it looks like now: it has a Pirates of the Caribbean feel to it: I like the billowing on the back, thanks to the 'sandwich-band' 

the sleeves have been lengthened with the cut-offs from the front and the front edges have been reinforced with the cuff cut-offs, which have been dyed seperately and I've added a bit of lace

I like the accidental pattern here 

Thursday, 24 May 2012

time for change

it was rather smelly and alive!

morning sun shining through

like the look of this

and once the jacket was washed and dried and ironed, I tried it on and I still didn't like the look of it (on me), and then it hit me: shorter! it needs to be shorter; so I pinned it upwards and that looked a lot  out came the scissors and snip snip the bottom part was cut away and I have been sewing in the shade of the verandah all afternoon and will post more tomorrow!

Monday, 21 May 2012

this is exciting

the first dye result was rather disappointing after I added fresh comfrey leaves and cow parsley cuttings to the first dye mixture, brought it all to the boil again and now the jacket has been soaking in the bucket since yesterday, with copper pipes for extra umpf and the sleeves are wrapped and tied around rusty bottle caps......will leave till thursday at least (if I can)

Saturday, 19 May 2012

dyeing yet again

mossy aldercones, torn comfrey leaves, chopped cowparsley, water and tartaric acid all together into the mix

Boro shirt soaking up the juices

BTW 49 years old today!

Friday, 18 May 2012

thriftshop usefuls

here I am at arm's length, wearing my 'new' vest

was attracted to this feather (nice pic of the dog)

the reason I went to our thriftshop in the first place, was because I needed an aluminium pan for dyeing and I could not resist this cheerful kettle, never know when that might come in handy. Until I have built an outdoor stove, I'll be using our camper cooker for dyeing when serious heat is needed (like most times as the weather has been too cold up until yesterday) 

Thursday, 17 May 2012


hundreds of bees hanging from a very thin branch, making their wild beehive

Monday, 14 May 2012

Sunday, 13 May 2012


what a beautiful day we are enjoying here, went for a walk this morning with my husband and the dog, a treat.

and another walk this afternoon with friends, meeting more friends on route who took us to this field, sometimes life is just good.

comfrey dye

the plant

 a very pale olive green

the method: I chopped the whole plant (except the root), put the bits into a large pan, just covered with water and brought this to the boil, added the fabrid (no mordant) and a piece of copper pipe, left to simmer for about two hours; removed and rinsed the fabric (very pale shade) blended the comfrey mush, passed it through a sieve back into the pan together with the cloth and copper (I did not add the remaining mush); I packed two bits of cotton cloth around wads of mush, tied with elastic bands, added these to the pan and brought the whole mixture to the boil and let simmer for about an hour, removed the pan from heat and left to soak overnight.  This morning I took out the bits of loose fabric and they have been washed with water and soap, hung out to dry and ironed.

Put the two packages into a glass jar with remaining liquid and the copper pipe, will leave them till next weekend, see if a longer soak makes a difference.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

cow parsley and aldercone dyes

cow parsley dye

on the left: original white, cowparsley yellow;
upper right: aldercone/tea dye, the fabrics were washed, dried and then added to the cowparsley dye: greenish yellow
lower right: aldercone/tea leaves dye: pale brown, with seam-resist-effect.
No mordant was used, all the fabrics have been washed with water and soap. I deliberately left the seams in during the dye to get different shades.
The aldercones,
 tartaric acid, left-over tea leaves were covered in water which was brought to the boil,  simmered for appr. half an hour and then the cloth was added and left to simmer for roughly half an hour. After cooling, the fabrics were washed with water and soap until water ran clear.
The cowparsley was roughly chopped, poured over with boiling water, left to simmer for about half an hour, the (dyed) fabrics were added and left to simmer for half and hour and left overnight (in pan, not on the gas). Rinsed and washed with water and soap until water was clear.

cow parsley yellow added to the goat wool collection, a couple more colours and I can start knitting a striped scarf.

Friday, 11 May 2012

boogie woogie mobile

What a treat:  Piet Mondrian and Alexander Calder in the same space, the Gemeentemuseum in the Hague to be exact. Went there this afternoon with a friend, it was inspiring and informative. Two artists who met in Paris in the twenties. Both kept on exploring in their art. I just love the fact that people all over keep on making, creating, playing, for better or for worse we can't keep still.


an eye opener, ha ha, the jacket I'm working on in the contemporay boro workshop over at Jude Hill's Spirit Cloth; the collar-tag has been removed and I have sewn in a home-dyed bit of linen.

it rained so much the road became a stream
and two very nice fabrics from a bag of clothes I received yesterday: the white will probably be used in the boro class and I will either shorten the colourful skirt and/or use the fabric for something else, it looks so summery and sunny!

Tuesday, 8 May 2012


longer days mean I can walk while it's still light after a long day in the office

Sunday, 6 May 2012


still haven't quite arrived; the day started cold and grey, luckily the sun came through during the afternoon, we lit an outdoor fire and I weeded here & there in the jungle; the dog managed to run away three times today, he was literally howling for a mystery trying to make a start in Jude's class, as I mentioned: have not landed just yet.